It was just two weeks ago when Chrysler announced that the Dodge Caliber was going out of production. What they didn’t mention was that they were in the final development and testing stages of the car that will be replacing it. The rumor is that the name plate Hornet will be used and the car will be heavily influenced by the Alfa Romeo Giulietta.
The Giulietta is currently experiencing slow then expected sales lately and the Fiat group will be looking to step up the release date of the Dodge Hornet built from the Fiat parts bin to keep production lines running. The spy shots were of a 4 door model with hopes that much like the Alfa Romeo Giulietta there will be a 3 door and a 5 door version in the works.
We would assume that the car will be powered by a MultiAir type engine most likely the 1.4-liter with the 1.8-liter being offered in the more performance orientated model. The Fiat 500’s 1.4-liter would be the fuel sipper model and is estimated at being able to achieve the magic 40 mpg number. Whereas the 1.8-liter in Europe is dialed up to output 230 hp and would be ideal for an SRT model. We will have to wait until the car is officially announced to confirm which displacement engines will be offered as well as if a diesel version will be North America bound.
From what we can see from the two spy shots the car is looking good and will be a welcome relieve to the SUV slab-sided Caliber. This new car will be a very important one for Chrysler as they look to compete with Chevrolet, Ford, and Hyundai in the compact car class.
To read about the renaming of the Hornet to dart as well as its official press launch images click here: Dodge Hornet Loses its Stripes and becomes the 2013 Dodge Dart
To view images of the new Dodge darts Interior click the link here: Dodge Releases Interior Images of the 2013 Dart and they Hit the Mark